Alumnae Association

Ad Astra
is published by the
Immaculate Conception High School
Alumnae Association - Toronto Chapter
Nov., 2001
Volume I,  No 27
I.C.H.S. Newsletter

Ad Astra
is published by the
Immaculate Conception High School
Alumnae Association - Toronto Chapter

I.C.H.S. Newsletter

Editorial Staff
Joan Chang
Ina Williams

Yvonne Lyew  Membership 

I.C.H.S Executive Committee 2001   
Yvonne Lyew            President
Sadie Wong        Vice President
Sandra Hardie          Secretary
Lorraine Chung  Ast. Secretary
Paula Burke-Depass
Sylvia Tavares  Ast. Treasurer 

Floor Members
Sharon Ffolkes-Abrahams
Joan Chang
Jeanette Chin
Laura Chin Pen
Claire Haynes
Gloria Ho Shue
Celia Butler-Lindo
Donna Rutty
Cathrine Sani
Jilian Saweczko
Ina Williams
Olive Williams

Please share your' news with us Weddings, Births, Deaths, Academic Achievement: etc.


Yvonne 905 420 1264
Fax:  416 964 9605  




Ad Astra

Immaculate Conception High School
Alumnae Association
(Toronto Chapter)

November, 2001
Volume 1, Number 27

Lisa Maria Narcisse
May 25, 1912 - July 2, 2001

by Yvonne Lyew

Lisa M. Narcisse, L.R.S.M., O.D., was born on May 25, 1912 in Kingston, Jamaica - the daughter of Constantia and Joseph Narcisse.  She was a graduate of the Immaculate Conception High School and began her teaching career in music while still a high school student.  She continued faithfully in this ministry for 48 years until her retirement in 1977.

 Music at ICHS and the name of Lisa Narcisse are synonymous.  She taught in the kindergarten and prep schools.  She was head of the music department, a piano and theory teacher, as well as a partner with her sister, Mrs Beryl Mair, in the Narcisse School of Music.  She was co-founder and director of the internationally performing I.C.H.S. Glee Club, a position she held for 29 years.  The group was a favourite performer at many functions.  On a 1 0-day visit to Canada they sang at St. Mary's Cathedral in Kingston, Ontario and gave a concert in the Rotunda at Parliament House in Ottawa.

 In recognition of her contribution to her country, she was awarded the Order of Distinction on October 15, 1979 by the Jamaican Government.  After many years of semi-retirement in Kingston, Ontario, Lisa relocated to Calgary, Alberta last year.  It was with great sadness and shock that we heard of her sudden death in an auto accident on July 2, 2001.  The accident also claimed the lives of her sister-in-law, Florence Narcisse and two friends. 

On Thursday, July 19, 2001 the Toronto ICHSAA held a memorial mass for Miss Narcisse at St. Aidan's Church in Scarborough. Many thanks to Deacon Patrick Chang who helped with the arrangements and Fr. Joseph Fenech, who celebrated mass and allowed us the use of St. Aidan. Our in-house Glee Club walked down the aisle to 'War March of the Priests' by Mendelssohn (our graduation march) each holding a white candle tied with blue ribbon.  The ladies formed a honour guard and sang Lisa's favourite hymn -"Let There Be Peace on Earth" as her nephew, Brian Mair, carried her urn to the altar.  We celebrated with Lisa's own Mento Mass accompanied by Leslie Chin on guitar and Patricia March on keyboard.  Alumna, Dawn Marie James sang a stirring rendition of the "Our Father" in tribute.  Happy memories were shared by Denise Mair-Bishop, Yvonne Lyew and Sr.  Maureen Clare.  We closed with both national anthems and the "Alma Mater" which was composed by Lisa.  As a spe-cial tribute the Glee Club ended the service with their signature song -'There are highways, there are byways....... as you travel down life's road.' A small reception was held in the foyer.

 Lisa Narcisse touched many lives in a very positive way.  She also helped to make this world a better place with the gift of her music, her spirituality, especially her devotion to the Sacred Heart and the gift of her ever-present smile and gentleness.  She may be gone but her legacy lives on.    

President's Message  

My Dear Fellow Alumnae,

 It is with regret that I have to report the passing of our beloved music teacher, friend, confidante - Lisa Maria Narcisse, who died under tragic circumstances on July 2nd 2001. A 'Lisa Narcisse Memorial Music Fund' has been set-up for those who would like to contribute. Proceeds are for the support of the music department at ICHS in Jamaica.

Summer is over and both post and present headmistresses of our Alma Mater visited Toronto. Unfortunately, Sr. Maureen Clare Hall was here for Miss Narcisse's Memorial Masses here in Toronto and Kingston, Ontario.

Sr. Mary Catherine Aarons' first visit to the Toronto Chapter was very enlightening. The executive had a small function whereby she gave us an in-depth account of the progress of the school as well as the four girls whom we sponsored when we implemented the Scholarship Fund in September 1999.

Weather did not permit our joint picnic with St. George's Old Boys and Alpha Academy on August 19th to be as successful as planned. We were expecting over 300 to attend. However, approximately 60 people braved the weather and had a great time. There were lots of chatter and laughter, not to mention the food!

Our annual Mass and Pot-luck luncheon will be at a new venue, St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Markham, as Shepherd Terrace which we enjoyed so much is under-going massive construction.

Looking forward to seeing you all at our annual Mass & pot-luck luncheon on December 9th.

Summer went by so quickly, hope we will not have a harsh winter.

Yvonne Lyew

Picnic Fun

Milne Park

August 19th, 2001


 by Donna Rutty

 Sister Mary Catherine's first visit to our alumnae was very inspiring and uplifting.  As usual, we converged on Sadie & Trevor Wong's home and were made to feel as welcomed as family.  We had a scrumptious meal and after dinner Sr. Mary Catherine spoke of all the marvellous things happening at our school.  By the way, Sister did not look a day older than when she taught us 'only a few years ago". (Is a youthful look connected to no husband and no kids?  Hmmm???)

 On behalf of the ICH5AA our new president, Yvonne Lyew, presented Sister with two cheques each for $ 2000.00 for the Band Camp and for our annual contribution to the Scholarship Fund.  Tivita Skeine, Nastassia Power, Bridgette Knight and Terry Ann Palmer are the four students under our sponsorship.

 It seems as if ICHS is going from strength to strength.  We are achieving academically, coming lst in Math, Biology, Food & Nutrition and Religious Education.  We are still maintaining our tradition of coming lst. in the swim meet.  Add to that - 4th in Math 2000, 5th in Math 2001 and 1st. in the Miami Classics.  We are a force to be reckoned with, both on and off the field.  

Sr. Maureen Clare's visit July, 2001

 Music has always been important to us as a school and as individuals.  Sister's heart seems to focus in that direction and under her leadership, ICHS has expanded it's Arts Department.  The commercial school is no more and the building has been converted to The Performing Arts Centre for Music and Drama with ct partition for the computer section.  Major Williams of the Jamaica Military Band, with the assistance of Dwight Richards, instructs the orchestra twice weekly- a full orchestra!  There are 13 music tutors including Andrew Fatt who teaches drums and Steven Woodham - violin.  We have a steel band in which the teachers play.  How come we didn't have that option in our days??  Our Glee Club will be entering the Festival in November 2001.

 We have tennis lessons every day taught by the best coach in Jamaica, Arthur Philpotts.

 The graduation commencement now takes place at the Hilton which sounds very fancy spancy but I have very fond memories of our graduation under the stars with Sr.  Maureen Clare telling us to glide across the room while holding our heads and shoulders high. (Immaculate ladies at all times!) All in all it sounds like our school is still on course graduating leaders in every walk of life.

  Go ICHS go!  

Sr. Mary Catherine's visit August, 2001

  Jon Jon Rutty

  There are no words adequate to express our thanks for the outpouring of love that was heaped on our family at Jonathan's death.  

A comment that was made to me by a family member was "This looks like an ICHSAA convention'.  There were so many of you bringing food, flowers, singing and assisting us.  I told my family that although they are not here enough to physically and sometimes emotionally help, the ICHSAA girls are family and it was a love convention.

Jonathan was a very special young man and at one point in his young life had even considered becoming a priest which at by age 16 and the advent of girls went through the window.  He was a joy and our strength as much as his sisters are and have been and we all miss him.  But as Camille Lai said with a bracelet that she made for me and helping us to prepare the Mass and programme: you loved him but God needed another angel.  I think that says it all.  

Thank you all for always being there.  Your friendship and love live on in all of us.


Francis, Donna, Terri Gaye, Lara and yes - Jon Jon.    

We extend our condolences and prayers to the families of.

Jonathan Francis Putty (Jon Jon),
beloved son of Donna (Chin) and Francis Rutty who died on July 16th after a long, courageous fight with cancer.

 Edward Haddad, father of Helen Haddad-Henriques

 Joseph Chin Loy, father of Charmaine Chin. 

Victor Williams, father of Celia Lindo-Butler. 

Wilfred deMercado, father of alumna Joan Elise deMercedo and George deMercado, V.P. Air Jamaica, Miami 

William Chen, father of Rose & Anne Marie. 

Alfred Chong, father-in-law of Sharon (Wong Chew Onn) and husband, Bobby Chong. 

Alumna Carole Anne Cappe (O'Connor), sister of Yvonne, Elizabeth, Angela, Laurice & Eleanor - leaving husband Dennis, Children Sean and Natalie. 

A warm welcome and lots of hugs to ... 

Maya McIntosh and Marissa Lue Sang, grand-daughters of Joan and Ronald (Sonny) Chang.  Landed July 11th and July 16th, respectively. 

Megham Jade, daughter of Daivid and Liz Lyew and granddaughter of our prez and proud grandmother, Yvonne.  Arrival time: 6:00am on July 24, 2001.


 The Narcisse family would like to thank everyone for their prayers, love, support and many thoughtful expressions of sympathy. 

In Lisa 's memory, her family has established THE LISA NARCISSE MEMORIAL MUSIC FUND) to aid the Music Department at ICHS. 

Donations may be sent to: 
Lisa Narcisse Memorial Fund
1930 Brookshire Square
Pickering, Ontario L1V 5E9

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